From atop of plastic crates to the shining spotlight of concert stage, the once busking duo named Winterbourne have fledged their indie-folk wings and taken flight to the realms of international touring. It’s not surprising these down to earth boys from the Central Coast have quickly amassed a loyal following, evident tonight as fans stand shoulder-to-shoulder, packing out Jive nightclub in Adelaide’s West end.
The self-confessed “calm before the Winterbourne storm”, Patrick James, opens the night with a series of folk ballads before picking up the pace with his recent pop-folk tunes. The atmosphere of the sold-out room is one of anticipation as the crowd excitedly await the headliners to take the stage.
Opening with Revolutionary Man, immediately the show holds the same 60’s nostalgia as the album itself. The small stage is backed by a red velvet curtain and shiny disco ball, a fitting aesthetic for the duo with Jordan donned in a floral shirt and James, a black turtle neck – a modern Simon & Garfunkel.
Following their sold out Much Better tour in April of this year, fans were begging for more from the duo and boy did they deliver. Winterbourne’s debut album Echo of Youth was released in August and they have been drip feeding us hits from the album ever since. There is a certain distressed energy to the record which pays homage to Winterbourne’s conventional sound while at the same time sounding fresh with an increase in synth-pop/rock elements and the addition of an electric cello player jokingly dubbed “Bjorn the backpacker from Switzerland” and Jeff on drums.
The duo mention that the album has been a long time coming, with James remarking “we’re very happy with ourselves,” and there is no doubt the record is packed full of passion. While the crowd clap in sync to Actors, the pair dominate the stage with their hips swaying, limbs flaying and a smile plastered across their face and undoubtedly everyone else’s.
The two share an on-stage chemistry that is completely endearing, with Jordan even cleaning the water off the corners of James’ lips, sending the crowd into laughter for the pair’s quirky benevolence for each another. Steading My Bones is a highlight of the night as Jordan plays his famous mandolin with an intensity only matched by the crowd’s admiration. The lights then become dim as the pair sing Puzzle, before reminding us again of their boyish innocence as they playfully argue who is the band’s front man when James’ microphone malfunctions.
Jordan regales the crowd with an anecdote from his youth; when his music teacher suggested he should not to pursue the piano. He of course then takes to the piano to play Sunday Night and the crowd join in for the incline. Band member, Josh dazzles the crowd with a solo on cello as the duo leave the stage for a costume change, returning to announce “part B of the album” and the figurative morning after Sunday Night. As they play Daylight, Take the Golden, and Cold from their earlier EP, the boys well and truly hold the room in the palm of their young and musically ambitious hands.
Not even fire alarms and lighting failures can deter Winterbourne; the show continues with both James and Jordan jumping off stage with their acoustic guitars to sing Sunrise in the middle of the crowd. Ending the set with their titled track Echo of Youth the crowd classically chant for “one more song”. Returning with yet another costume change, the duo politely sings a chorus from Shape at the request of a begging fan. James then tells Jordan to “stop asking them questions and play the f*cking song,” leading the charismatic pair into their final song for the night, Heart and Mind.
Through a combination of their soothing folk sound, endearing personas and alluring stage presence Winterbourne’s James Draper and Jordan Brady have once again left us excitedly anticipating the next show.
Live Review By Caitlin Graziano